iPlayer Radio What's New?
Image for Chemical Weapons and the Law

Listen now 28 mins

Listen in pop-out player

Chemical Weapons and the Law

28 minutes
First broadcast:
Tuesday 22 October 2013

In this week's programme Law in Action charts the history of laws forbidding the use of chemical weapons, and reveals how they first emerged in India over 2000 years ago. Today, with Syria now signing up to the chemical weapons convention, could we be on the brink of abolishing chemical weapons for good?

Joshua Rozenberg interviews Karim Hammoud from the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons, which is responsble for enforcing the treaty, and asks why we need special laws for chemical weapons - what distinguishes them other deadly weapons?

Also: The programme reflects on the first public lecture given by the new Lord Chief Justice, Lord Thomas of Cwmgiedd, presented at Gray's Inn in London. Titled 'Justice in One Place or Several?', Lord Thomas reveals his proposal to enhance the role of courts outside of London.

Joshua also debates the merits of allowing TV cameras into the Court of Appeal with Baroness Helena Kennedy QC - will it help open up an understanding of the law to the public?


Jean Pascal Zanders, chemical weapons expert and consultant, founder of the-trench.org

Karim Hammoud, Senior Legal Officer, Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

Baroness Helena Kennedy QC.

British veterans of World War I, archive courtesy of the Imperial War Museum, London.

Producer: Mike Wendling
Series Producer: Richard Fenton-Smith
Editor: Richard Knight.


Too Many Law Students?

Image for Too Many Law Students, Not Enough Jobs?

Is the legal profession guilty of training too many lawyers?


  1. Image for Law in Action

    Law in Action

    With wit, authority and insight, Joshua Rozenberg presents radio's celebrated and award-winning…

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.

Added. Check out your playlist Dismiss